There are two types of bentonite: (1) the sodium, high-swelling type, derived from volcanic ash that was deposited in marine environments; and (2) the calcium, low-swelling type, which evolved from volcanic ash deposited in freshwater environments. Bentonites are used in industry as drilling muds, foundry sand binders, animal feed binders, binders and carriers for pesticides and drugs, binders for iron ore pelletizing (taconite), landfill and pond liners, thickeners for slurry trenches, and flocculents. There is an extensive body of literature available related to the swelling properties of montmorillonite extending back to 1954 (Norrish, 1954; Odom and Low, 1978...

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